Unfortunately, we know that tennis has a steroid problem. Previously, we wrote about tennis players who were convicted of using anabolic steroids or other drugs to increase athletic performance. Sadly, many athletes do not want to play according to the rules established by international and national anti-doping organizations. They want to win at whatever cost. This has a negative effect on sports as such.
Rafael Nadal (also known as Rafa Nadal) is one of the greatest tennis players of our time. Perhaps you remember his outstanding tennis matches and the unique style of playing. However, some people have suspicions that this great tennis player was deceiving all of us and using forbidden medicines to increase performance. Is it true? Did Rafael Nadal use steroids or not? Can we consider him a steroid cheater? Read our article below to find out the answer.
Rafael Nadal’s Biography – Key Facts about the Athlete
Rafael Nadal is a Spanish tennis player, fourteen-time winner of the Grand Slam tournaments, the owner of Golden Slam achievements, the former first racket of the world in the ATP rankings. Now it is included in the world’s top 5 classification of tennis players. The Spaniard is a fairly versatile tennis player, but the ideal condition for him is clay tennis-court surface. In sports circles, Nadal even has a nickname – “The King of Clay”. Tennis experts, as well as Raphael’s tennis partners, reasonably consider him one of the best players of our time.
Rafael was born in 1986 in the Balearic Islands (Mallorca Island). The boy’s father was a businessman; his mother was a housewife. The love for tennis was instilled by his uncle named Tony (a coach). We can say that his sports biography began in his childhood. Rafael Nadal was a frequent visitor to the football stadiums in Spain, where another boy’s uncle, Miguel Angel Nadal, performed professionally.
The sportsman has been dating long-time girlfriend Maria Perello since 2005. In addition to tennis, Rafael loves to play golf, is a passionate fan of Madrid “Real” and the national team of Spain in football. Nadal performs in the Nike brand outfit. In the early years of his career he preferred to play in a sleeveless sports shirt, currently he trains and plays in an ordinary T-shirt. It is noteworthy that in one season the Spanish tennis player changes several pairs of sneakers, however on the right sneaker you can always see the inscription – “Rafa”.
The Spanish tennis player is very proud of his native Manacor, where he lived together with his parents and sister. At the age of 14, the Spanish Tennis Federation offered the young athlete to move to Barcelona and pay for his training, but Raphael, after consulting with his uncle and coach, decided to stay in his hometown.
Professional Career of Nadal
Rafael Nadal began to play tennis at a professional level at the age of 15, but at the age of 16 he was already playing at the youth Wimbledon. At the same youthful level, the young athlete helped his country’s national team win the Davis Cup. Since then, Nadal performed more than 1,000 official matches, 800 of which he won. Currently, the Spaniard has about 70 titles received at international tournaments. The best achievement of the tennis player in the rating of the APR is the first position, which the Spaniard kept from 2008 to 2009. Also on the account of Rafael Nadal more than 2008 fights in doubles, however in this kind of competitions the sportsman has not received a big glory. Rafael Nadal continues to perform at a professional level, but now he has a track record, which almost any tennis player can envy. In the Grand Slam series, the Spaniard won the following tournaments: the Australian Open, the Wimbledon Tournament, the US Open, and nine times he won the French Championship. In addition, Nadal has 27 victories in the Masters series and four wins in the popular tournament of national teams (the Davis Cup), where Rafael defended his national team.
Rafael Nadal and Steroids Use – Peoples’ Accusations
Rafael Nadal is a very popular tennis player. Naturally, many other players envy him. Therefore, many players have repeatedly accused Nadal of using illegal medicines. Moreover, not only tennis players did it. Also, Raphael was slandered by various media and even government officials.
That’s what different people said about the athlete’s use of anabolic steroids and other prohibited medicines:
- In early 2013, tennis player Christophe Rochus suggested that Nadal’s break in performances is not a consequence of health problems, but an unofficial disqualification for the use of illegal drugs. Nadal did not take long to wait: she called Rochus imbecile, rude and “a real idiot.”
- In the same year, tennis player Daniel Kellerer said: “Nadal did not play for seven months, but when he returned, he won 10 tournaments out of 13. This is impossible and speaks for itself. Nobody believes that he did not take anything. Just imagine what would have been with tennis, if one announced that his samples were positive. “
- Again, in 2013 Robin Haase said: “This year I passed a lot of tests, but I think that tennis should be approached to this more meaningfully. When Nadal wins everything after a seven-month absence because of an injury, he should be checked properly. “
- In the same year, commentator Michael Emmett wrote “Rumors about Nadal are similar to those about Lance Armstrong. A few years ago, I was sitting in the locker room and heard three of the trainers discussing the steroids Nadal took. One of them, a Colombian, said he saw how he was injected with some performance enhancing drugs before training in Monte Carlo. Yes, now it’s only rumors, but I’m convinced that one day all this will come out, as it was with Armstrong. “
- In the spring of 2016, former Minister of Sports of France Roselyne Bachelot positioned break in Rafael Nadal’s performances as a hidden ban due to violating the Anti-Doping Code.
New Facts about Nadal & Steroids
In 2016, Rafael Nadal’s name appeared in a list of athletes who had ever received permission from WADA to use prohibited substances for therapeutic purposes. This list was published by the hacker group Fancy Bears.
This list contained names of 26 athletes from ten countries. Rafa was the only Spaniard on this list. The documents posted on the group’s website indicated that Nadal took steroids intramuscularly in 2009 and 2012. In 2009 he was allowed to take betamethasone, and in 2012 he legally used corticotropin. On September 23, 2009, Dr. Stuart Miller of the International Tennis Federation authorized the use of a single dose of betamethasone for Raphael, and on June 30, 2012, Nadal was prescribed several doses of a corticosteroid (tetracosactide) by the same doctor.
In addition to Nadal, this list contained the names of the following athletes: a four-time Olympic runner from the UK Mohamed Farah and a Hungarian swimmer, six-time Olympic prize-winner László Cseh.
Possible Steroid Cycle of Rafa Nadal
We do not exactly know what types of steroids Rafael Nadal probably used to enhance his physique and athletic performance. But we can assume the following possible steroid cycle of the tennis player (this cycle is our evaluation opinion and cannot be considered a real fact):
- Oral steroids. Perhaps Raphael used oral steroids. It should be noted that oral steroids, in general, have a shorter half-life than many injectable steroids. Therefore, they are more difficult to be detected that steroid injections.
- HGH drugs. Perhaps the famous tennis player used growth hormone for more rapid recovery after injuries. Some people found a photo of a young Nadal where he was incredibly muscular. If you compare these photos with the modern physical shape of the athlete, you will see a big difference. This may indicate that Rafael used to take illegal hormonal medications.
In addition, it is known that Raphael Nadal used stem cell treatment (like Bartolo Colon) that possibly gave him the opportunity to use some medicines as a therapeutic exemption.